Leap of Faith

I hear a lot about people’s pains. I find in my new life that my journey has made me seem approachable to many, like someone who can empathize with their troubles. I don’t mind talking and listening to those who need to talk, for the most part, because anything I can do to help someone is important. I also do see that for too many times, people like to talk and talk and talk. They don’t hear what I’m saying. They don’t want to stop talking about their pain, their loss, themselves.

Herein lies the fence that keeps us gated from the path to self discovery. We like to stay where we are because you can define the place you’re in – sad, depressed, alone, unhappy.

The fence is keeping you from looking at yourself and knowing you have to stop being selfish. The fence is evil because it keeps you from learning about yourself. Self discovery and self examination can be painful – often more painful than where you are now. So, many of us think we have to wallow in our misery. Some of us want to wallow in the dark.

God is on the other side of that fence. He is prodding us to see how life will be better again. He asks us to stop thinking about our pain and instead, we have to think about our place in this world. What can we do for others? What can you do to show others that God is there for them?

It is uncomfortable to move on. Jumping over that fence asks much of us. It requires us to not be selfish, to be more patient, and to be the kind of people Jesus wants us to be.

But it is in allowing ourselves to be fully open to Jesus in our hearts and spirits that we find peace, comfort and yes, purpose. We all have a purpose in this world. We all have so many things we can do for so many. Instead of what we want and what we think we need, you will find in Jesus the happiness that makes all those needs and wants so trivial. The peace and strength and purpose will be clearer, stronger, and more satisfying.

Jump that fence. Work on self examination. Find your purpose.

How to talk to Teens, according to Teens…

Johnny’s Ambassadors is a non-profit group that takes ACTION to spread the word about the harms of marijuana on youth. Founder Laura Stack offers so much information free of charge, including webinars that we spotlight here.

A member of Johnny’s Ambassadors Advisory Council member, Kari Eckert, lost her son, Robbie, to suicide, and TODAY would have been his 18th birthday. Kari’s nonprofit, Robbie’s Hope, is offering an adult handbook for you called “A Guide by Teens on How to Talk to Teens.” Laura, Kari and others request to please honor her son’s memory for his birthday and download, use, and share this incredible guide! It helps parents navigate conversations with their teens on a variety of teenage issues including anxiety, depression, and suicide.

Conversation Starters

Find a moment to talk (from Seize The Awkward)

Having a conversation about mental health might be uncomfortable, but it can make all the difference. Seize The Awkward offers the tools – from conversation guides to tips –that can help you help those in need.

Concerned about a friend?

You might not be certain your friend is displaying worrisome signs regarding their mental health. Here are a few signs to look for as a guide:

– Impulsive behaviors or being more irritated than usual
– Not functioning like their usual selves (i.e., change in habits of how they dress, general appearance, eating or sleep habits)
– Talking about feelings of loneliness or despair
– Excessive worry
– Trouble concentrating
– Substance misuse

The above is just one of several guides to help start conversations between friends, kids and their parents, and more. Learn the Signs, make connections and stay mentally healthy.